The phrase axis of evil was first used by U.S. President George W. Bush in his State of the Union address on January 29, 2002, and often repeated throughout his presidency, to describe foreign governments that, during his administration, sponsored terrorism and sought weapons of mass destruction. The notion of such an axis was used to pinpoint these common enemies of the United States and rally the American populace in support of the War on Terror. The term was later used by economist Paul Krugman, arguing that "[t]here's a new axis of evil: Russia, Saudi Arabia — and the United States", as the three countries all declined to endorse the United Nation's latest climate study at the 2018 United Nations Climate Change Conference.
In his 2002 State of the Union Address, Bush called North Korea "A regime arming with missiles and weapons of mass destruction, while starving its citizens." He also stated Iran "aggressively pursues these weapons and exports terror, while an unelected few repress the Iranian people's hope for freedom." Of the three nations Bush cited, however, he gave the most criticism to Iraq. He stated "Iraq continues to flaunt its hostility toward America and to support terror. The Iraqi regime has plotted to develop anthrax and nerve gas and nuclear weapons for over a decade. This is a regime that has already used poison gas to murder thousands of its own citizens, leaving the bodies of mothers huddled over their dead children. This is a regime that agreed to international inspections, then kicked out the inspectors. This is a regime that has something to hide from the civilized world." Afterwards, Bush said, "States like these and their terrorist allies constitute an axis of evil, arming to threaten the peace of the world."
The phrase was attributed to former Bush speechwriter David Frum, originally as the axis of hatred and then evil. Frum explained his rationale for creating the phrase axis of evil in his book The Right Man: The Surprise Presidency of George W. Bush. Essentially, the story begins in late December 2001 when head speechwriter Michael Gerson gave Frum the assignment of articulating the case for dislodging the regime of Saddam Hussein in Iraq in only a few sentences for the upcoming State of the Union address. Frum says he began by rereading President Franklin D. Roosevelt's "date which will live in infamy" speech given on December 8, 1941, after the Japanese surprise attack on Pearl Harbor. While Americans needed no convincing about going to war with Japan, Roosevelt saw the greater threat to the United States coming from Nazi Germany, and he had to make the case for fighting a two-ocean war.
Frum points in his book to a now often-overlooked sentence in Roosevelt's speech which reads in part, "...we will not only defend ourselves to the uttermost but will make very certain that this form of treachery shall never endanger us again." Frum interprets Roosevelt's oratory like this: "For FDR, Pearl Harbor was not only an attack—it was a warning of future and worse attacks from another, even more dangerous enemy." Japan, a country with one-tenth of America's industrial capacity, a dependence on imports for its food, and already engaged in a war with China, was extremely reckless to attack the United States, a recklessness "that made the Axis such a menace to world peace", Frum says. Saddam Hussein's two wars, against Iran and Kuwait, were just as reckless, Frum decided, and therefore presented the same threat to world peace.
In his book Frum relates that the more he compared the Axis powers of World War II to modern "terror states", the more similarities he saw. "The Axis powers disliked and distrusted one another", Frum writes. "Had the Axis somehow won the war, its members would quickly have turned on one another." Iran, Iraq, al-Qaeda, and Hezbollah, despite quarreling among themselves, "all resented power of the West and Israel, and they all despised the humane values of democracy." There, Frum saw the connection: "Together, the terror states and the terror organizations formed an axis of hatred against the United States."
Frum tells that he then sent off a memo with the above arguments and also cited some of the atrocities perpetrated by the Iraqi government. He expected his words to be chopped apart and altered beyond recognition, as is the fate of much presidential speechwriting, but his words were ultimately read by Bush nearly verbatim, though Bush changed the term axis of hatred to axis of evil. North Korea was added to the list, he says, because it was attempting to develop nuclear weapons, had a history of reckless aggression, and "needed to feel a stronger hand".
Afterwards, Frum's wife disclosed his authorship to the public.
A decade before the 2002 State of the Union address, in August 1992, the Israeli-American political scientist Yossef Bodansky wrote a paper entitled "Tehran, Baghdad & Damascus: The New Axis Pact" while serving as the Director of the Congressional Task Force on Terrorism and Unconventional Warfare of the US House of Representatives. Although he did not explicitly apply the epithet evil to his New Axis, Bodansky's axis was otherwise very reminiscent of Frum's axis. Bodansky felt that this new Axis was a very dangerous development. The gist of Bodansky's argument was that Iran, Iraq and Syria had formed a "tripartite alliance" in the wake of the First Gulf War, and that this alliance posed an imminent threat that could only be dealt with by invading Iraq a second time and overthrowing Saddam Hussein.
On May 6, 2002, then-Undersecretary of State John R. Bolton gave a speech entitled "Beyond the Axis of Evil". In it he added three more nations to be grouped with the already mentioned rogue states: Cuba, Libya, and Syria. The criteria for inclusion in this grouping were: "state sponsors of terrorism that are pursuing or who have the potential to pursue weapons of mass destruction (WMD) or have the capability to do so in violation of their treaty obligations."
Iran and Iraq fought the long Iran–Iraq War in the 1980s under basically the same leadership as that which existed at the time of Bush's speech, leading some to believe that the linking of the nations under the same banner was misguided. Others argued that each of the three nations in the "axis of evil" had some special characteristics which were obscured by grouping them together. Anne Applebaum wrote about the debate over North Korea's inclusion in the group.
In the days after the 9/11 attacks, Ryan Crocker, the American Ambassador to Iraq from 2007 to 2009 (then a senior State Department official), and other senior U.S. State Department officials flew to Geneva to meet secretly with representatives of the government of Iran. For several months, Crocker and his Iranian counterparts cooperated on capturing Al Qaeda operatives in the region and fighting the Taliban government in Afghanistan. These meetings stopped after the "Axis of Evil" speech hardened Iranian attitudes toward cooperating with the U.S.
In April 2006 the phrase axis of terror earned more publicity. Israel's UN Ambassador, Dan Gillerman, cautioned of a new axis of terror—Iran, Syria and the Hamas-run Palestinian government; Gillerman repeated the term before the UN over the crisis in Lebanon. Some three months later Israeli senior foreign ministry official Gideon Meir branded the alleged alliance an axis of terror and hate.
In 2006, Isaias Afewerki, the president of Eritrea, had declared in response to the deteriorating relations with the neighboring countries of Ethiopia, Sudan and Yemen by accusing them of being an "Axis of Belligerence."
The former president of Venezuela, Hugo Chávez, described the so-called New Latin Left as an "axis of good" comprising Bolivia, Chile, Cuba, Ecuador, Nicaragua, Uruguay and Venezuela and instead "Washington and its allies" as an "axis of evil".
In 2008, The Economist featured an article about the "Axis of Diesel" in reference to a burgeoning alliance of Iran, Russia, and Venezuela. They cite the billions of dollars in arms sales to Venezuela and the construction of Iranian nuclear facilities as well as the rejection of added sanctions on Iran. They did conclude that the benefits of the arrangement were exaggerated, however.
In 2012, geo-strategist and author, William C. Martel, in a short essay for the publication, The Diplomat, wrote of an "Authoritarian Axis", comprising China, Russia, Iran, North Korea, Syria & Venezuela. Following the death of Venezuela's Hugo Chávez in 2013, Martell removed Venezuela from the assigned list of countries, in his subsequent writings about the "axis". Martel's thesis drew criticism from several quarters, with the main arguments cited in opposition to his idea being the lack of cohesion and generally low levels of cooperation shown between the cited countries.
Several environmental non-governmental organizations, including Friends of the Earth International and Greenpeace, as well as the Green Party of Canada, have dubbed Australia, Canada and United States, the "Axis of Environmental Evil" because of their lack of support for international environmental agreements, particularly those related to climate change.
During a March 2018 interview with the Egyptian media, Saudi Crown Prince Mohammad bin Salman referred Iran, Turkey and Islamist organizations such as ISIL and the Muslim Brotherhood as the "triangle of evil", to describe their current policies in the Middle East. Those remarks were later dismissed by Iran, describing it as "childish" and said that Saudi Arabia's intervention in Yemen has "caused instability and extremism and stuck in a quagmire" in Yemen.
Various related pun phrases include:
The term has also lent itself to various parodies, including the following:
British Comedian Bill Bailey also referred to the Axis of Evil in his Part Troll tour. He queried whether it was possible to assume a non-evil role within a terrorist organisation, possibly in the laundry or catering department. He then went on to pretend that he was the receptionist for the Axis of Evil. Imagining he was answering the phone, Bill Bailey says to the audience, "Hello, Axis of Evil. Oh no, they're all out at the moment. Oh, I don't know. Doing something evil I suppose". Placing the "caller" on hold, he then played a short jingle for the "Axis of Evil Pension Scheme".
In response to the problems Americans of Middle-Eastern descent have in the current climate, a group of comedians have banded together to form the Axis of Evil Comedy Tour. The comedians, Ahmed Ahmed (from Egypt), Maz Jobrani (from Iran), and Aron Kader (whose father is Palestinian), have created a show which aired on Comedy Central. They have also included half-Palestinian, half-Italian Dean Obeidallah in some of their acts.
The group took the comedy tour around the Middle East (November–December 2007), performing in the UAE, Egypt, Kuwait, Jordan, and Lebanon to sell-out crowds.
In 2003 the Norwegian record label Kirkelig Kulturverksted published the CD Lullabies from the Axis of Evil containing 14 lullabies from Iran, Iraq, North Korea, Palestine, Syria, Afghanistan and Cuba. Every lullaby is presented in its original form sung by women from these countries, and then a western version with interpretations in English.
George W. Bush, the 43rd President of the United States of America, delivered the 2002 State of the Union Address at the United States Capitol building on January 29, 2002.
In front of members of the 107th United States Congress, along with special civilian and military guests, Bush addressed the U.S. as he delivered his first State of the Union address. The speech covered the effects of the September 11 attacks of the previous year and Bush's plans to prevent future terrorist attacks upon the United States. Bush gave a progress report on the Global War on Terrorism and detailed his plans to end terrorism and bring all terrorists to justice, either by legal prosecution or death.
The issues inside the United States were also addressed by Bush, including his plan to strengthening the U.S. economy after a recession. The speech was centered on foreign affairs and was well received by both Republicans and Democrats. He said, "In four short months, our nation has comforted the victims, begun to rebuild New York and the Pentagon, rallied a great coalition, captured, arrested, and rid the world of thousands of terrorists, destroyed Afghanistan's terrorist training camps, saved a people from starvation, and freed a country from brutal oppression." In that statement, Bush referred to how the United States deposed the Taliban from its rule over Afghanistan. He stated that the U.S. deposed the Emirate of Afghanistan, because the Islamic regime did not respect the human rights of Afghan citizens.Axis of Evil (film)
Axis of Evil (French: L'axe du mal) is a 2004 France-Canada co-production by Pascal Lièvre about a couple declaring their love for each other with the same words United States President George W. Bush used to announce a war on terrorism.Axis of Evil Comedy Tour
The Axis of Evil Comedy Tour is a comedy tour featuring four Middle Eastern comedians and special guest comedians. The tour's name is derived from a speech by US President George W. Bush which designated Iraq, Iran, and North Korea as the "Axis of Evil". The tour started on 11 November 2005. The group jokes about their culture along with being Middle-Eastern in America. All of the comedians state that their lives changed considerably with 9/11, with one member, Egyptian-American Ahmed Ahmed, whose name matches the alias used by an Osama bin Laden henchman, noting that he is frequently stopped by airport immigration officials on suspicion of terrorism — including a 12-hour stint in a jail in Las Vegas. On 10 March 2007 they were given their own Comedy Central Special. The group broke up in 2011.
The group's current events sense of humor has attracted media attention. They have been interviewed by CNN, NPR, The New York Times and Time among others. They toured in several Mid-East countries with Showtime Arabia. King Abdullah II of Jordan has attended their show in Jordan and has conveyed his appreciation of their work.Axis of evil (cosmology)
The "Axis of Evil" is a name given to an anomaly in astronomical observations of the Cosmic Microwave Background (CMB). The anomaly appears to give the plane of the Solar System and hence the location of Earth a greater significance than might be expected by chance – a result which appears to run counter to expectations from the Copernican Principle.
The Cosmic Microwave Background (CMB) radiation signature presents a direct large-scale view of the universe that can be used to identify whether our position or movement has any particular significance. There has been much publicity about analysis of results from the Wilkinson Microwave Anisotropy Probe (WMAP) and Planck mission that show both expected and unexpected anisotropies in the CMB. The motion of the solar system, and the orientation of the plane of the ecliptic are aligned with features of the microwave sky, which on conventional thinking are caused by structure at the edge of the observable universe. Specifically, with respect to the ecliptic plane the "top half" of the CMB is slightly cooler than the "bottom half"; furthermore, the quadrupole and octupole axes are only a few degrees apart, and these axes are aligned with the top/bottom divide.Lawrence Krauss is quoted as follows in a 2006 Edge.org article:
But when you look at CMB map, you also see that the structure that is observed, is in fact, in a weird way, correlated with the plane of the earth around the sun. Is this Copernicus coming back to haunt us? That's crazy. We're looking out at the whole universe. There's no way there should be a correlation of structure with our motion of the earth around the sun – the plane of the earth around the sun – the ecliptic. That would say we are truly the center of the universe.
Some anomalies in the background radiation have been reported which are aligned with the plane of the Solar System, which contradicts the Copernican principle by suggesting that the Solar System's alignment is special. Land and Magueijo in 2005 dubbed this alignment the "axis of evil" owing to the implications for current models of the cosmos, although several later studies have shown systematic errors in the collection of that data and the way it is processed. Various studies of the CMB anisotropy data either confirm the Copernican principle, model the alignments in a non-homogeneous universe still consistent with the principle, or attempt to explain them as local phenomena. Some of these alternate explanations were discussed by Copi, et al., who claimed that data from the Planck satellite could shed significant light on whether the preferred direction and alignments were spurious. Coincidence is a possible explanation. Chief scientist from WMAP, Charles L. Bennett suggested coincidence and human psychology were involved, "I do think there is a bit of a psychological effect, people want to find unusual things."Data from the Planck Telescope published in 2013 has since found stronger evidence for the anisotropy.
"For a long time, part of the community was hoping that this would go away, but it hasn’t," says Dominik Schwarz of the University of Bielefeld in Germany.There is no consensus on the nature of this and other observed anomalies and their statistical significance is unclear. For example, a study that includes the Planck mission results shows how masking techniques could introduce errors that when taken into account can render several anomalies, including the Axis of Evil, not statistically significant. A 2016 study compared isotropic and anisotropic cosmological models against WMAP and Planck data and found no evidence for anisotropy.The axis was the subject of much of the discussion in the 2014 documentary film The Principle, and formed the basis of the argument advanced therein.Axis powers
The Axis powers (German: Achsenmächte; Italian: Potenze dell'Asse; Japanese: 枢軸国 Sūjikukoku), also known as "Rome–Berlin–Tokyo Axis" (also acronymized as "Roberto"), were the nations that fought in World War II against the Allies. The Axis powers agreed on their opposition to the Allies, but did not completely coordinate their activity.
The Axis grew out of the diplomatic efforts of Germany, Italy, and Japan to secure their own specific expansionist interests in the mid-1930s. The first step was the treaty signed by Germany and Italy in October 1936. Benito Mussolini declared on 1 November that all other European countries would from then on rotate on the Rome–Berlin axis, thus creating the term "Axis". The almost simultaneous second step was the signing in November 1936 of the Anti-Comintern Pact, an anti-communist treaty between Germany and Japan. Italy joined the Pact in 1937. The "Rome–Berlin Axis" became a military alliance in 1939 under the so-called "Pact of Steel", with the Tripartite Pact of 1940 leading to the integration of the military aims of Germany, Italy and Japan.
At its zenith during World War II, the Axis presided over territories that occupied large parts of Europe, North Africa, and East Asia. There were no three-way summit meetings and cooperation and coordination was minimal, with slightly more between Germany and Italy. The war ended in 1945 with the defeat of the Axis powers and the dissolution of their alliance. As in the case of the Allies, membership of the Axis was fluid, with some nations switching sides or changing their degree of military involvement over the course of the war.Black Utopia
Black Utopia is the third solo album by keyboard player Derek Sherinian. In addition to the returning members Zakk Wylde, Simon Phillips and Steve Lukather, three new musicians joined Sherinian: bass guitarist Billy Sheehan and guitarists Yngwie Malmsteen – with whom Sherinian had toured in 2001 – and Al Di Meola. "One of the highlights of my career was flying to Miami to produce Yngwie, and the next day Al Di Meola - all for my record!" The song "Axis Of Evil", (co-written with KISS drummer Eric Singer), has Zakk Wylde and Yngwie Malmsteen in a guitar duel. Black Utopia was the beginning of an ongoing collaboration with drummer Brian Tichy, and album cover artist Mattias Noren. Black Utopia is Sherinian's best selling solo record to date.
In Japan, the cover of Black Utopia was altered to remove the cross in the title; Derek Sherinian commented that the cross "meant nothing" and was added for aesthetic purposes.The track "Nightmare Cinema" is named after an alternate ego used during encore performances by Dream Theater, of which Sherinian is a former member.Capcom Digital Collection
Capcom Digital Collection is a compilation of Xbox Live Arcade games released by Capcom for the Xbox 360. The game was released on March 27, 2012 in North America and March 30, 2012 in Europe.The collection features eight games previously available via Xbox Live Arcade for Xbox 360.
Super Street Fighter II Turbo HD Remix
Final Fight: Double Impact
Super Puzzle Fighter II Turbo HD Remix
1942: Joint Strike
Bionic Commando Rearmed 2
Rocketmen: Axis of Evil, including Rocketmen: It Came From Uranus expansion
Wolf of the Battlefield: Commando 3Cuisines of the Axis of Evil and Other Irritating States
Cuisines of the Axis of Evil and Other Irritating States: A Dinner Party Approach to International Relations is a political satire-based cook book written with a left-leaning point of view authored by C. Christine Fair. Inspired by George W. Bush's 2002 State of the Union address, the book utilizes recipes for dishes from the so-called Axis of Evil countries such as Iran, Iraq and North Korea as well as other nations such as Cuba, Israel and the United States mixed with political humor.David Frum
David Jeffrey Frum (; born June 30, 1960) is a Canadian-American political commentator.
A speechwriter for President George W. Bush, Frum later authored the first book about Bush's presidency written by a former member of the administration. He was credited with inspiring the phrase "axis of evil" in Bush's 2002 State of the Union address.He is a senior editor at The Atlantic as well as an MSNBC contributor. He serves on the board of directors of the Republican Jewish Coalition, the British think tank Policy Exchange, the anti-drug policy group Smart Approaches to Marijuana, and as vice chairman and an associate fellow of the R Street Institute.Frum is the son of Canadian journalist Barbara Frum.Hanna Mina
Hanna Mina (Arabic: حنا مينة) (9 March 1924 – 21 August 2018) was a Syrian novelist, described in Literature from the "Axis of Evil" as the country's "most prominent".His early novels belong to the movement of social realism, and focus on class conflict; his later works contain "a more symbolic analysis of class differences". His writing on the suffering of ordinary people was partly inspired by his own experiences, alternately working as a stevedore, barber and journalist; his autobiographical short story, "On the Sacks", was published in 1976.Several of his works are set during the period of the French Mandate of Syria, or in the period immediately following independence.Mina has authored about 40 novels, varying in imaginary value and narrative significance. But his achievement lies in the foundation he laid for this literary structure. For his collective works and novels, Mina was awarded the Arab Writer's Prize in 2005.Holidays in the Axis of Evil
Holidays in the Danger Zone: Holidays in the Axis of Evil is a two part travel documentary on all of the countries in U.S. President George W. Bush's "Axis of evil", part of the Holidays in the Danger Zone series, produced and broadcast by BBC Correspondent (now This World). Written and presented by Ben Anderson, the series was first broadcast on 31 January 2003 from 2250 GMT on BBC Four.
Episode 1: Iran, Syria & Libya
Episode 2: Cuba, Iraq & North KoreaIn the series, Anderson visits the 6 nations in U.S. President George W. Bush's "Axis of evil". They are all accused of harboring terrorists and attempting to build or acquire weapons of mass destruction, But, there is another connection between the six countries - you can go on holiday there as according to Anderson "First it was Iraq, Iran and North Korea. Then George W expanded the axis of evil to include Cuba, Syria and Libya. All I could find that linked these countries was that you could travel to all six on a tourist visa. So I did".Literature from the "Axis of Evil"
Literature from the "Axis of Evil" is an anthology of short stories, poems and excerpts from novels by twenty writers from seven countries, translated into English (often for the first time), and published by Words Without Borders in 2006.
The purpose of the anthology, as described in the editors' note, is to increase "American access to world literature in translation". The editors wrote:
"This book was born in conscientious objection to the use of 'axis of evil' rhetoric and to the OFAC's apparent fear of 'free trade' in ideas and literature [...]. Our intention has never been to present a naive apology for tyrannical regimes nor to recommend any particular political solution to the problems they present both internationally and for their own people [...]. Rather, we aim simply to stimulate international conversation through literature, with all its complexity and nuanced insights into the ideas, beliefs, daily lives and articles of reference of people in other cultures, who are thinking and writing in languages other than English."The editors selected works, all published in the second half of the 20th or early 21st century, by authors living in, or originating from, Iran, Iraq, North Korea, Syria, Libya, Sudan and Cuba. A brief overview of the contemporary literature of each country is provided, to set the writings in their specific national context.Lullabies from the Axis of Evil
Lullabies from the Axis of Evil (2004) is an album collecting traditional lullabies sung by women from Iraq, Iran, and North Korea ("the axis of evil"), as well as Syria, Libya, and Cuba ("beyond the axis of evil"), plus Afghanistan and Palestine, mixed with Western performers singing translated versions of the songs.
It was conceived by Norwegian music producer Erik Hillestad in reaction to the "axis of evil" term first used by U.S. President George W. Bush in his 2002 State of the Union address.Maz Jobrani
Maziyar "Maz" Jobrani (Persian: مازیار جبرانی; born February 26, 1972) is an Iranian-American comedian and actor who is part of the "Axis of Evil" comedy group. The group appeared on a comedy special on Comedy Central. Jobrani has also appeared in numerous films, television shows, including Better Off Ted, on radio, and in comedy clubs. His filmography includes roles in The Interpreter, Friday After Next, Dragonfly, and Jimmy Vestvood: Amerikan Hero. He appeared as a regular character on the 2017 CBS sitcom Superior Donuts. He is also currently a board member of the National Iranian American Council (NIAC).Rim Banna
Rim Banna (Arabic: ريم بنا; 8 December 1966 – 24 March 2018) was a Palestinian singer, composer, arranger and activist, who was most known for her modern interpretations of traditional Palestinian songs and poetry. Banna was born in Nazareth, where she graduated from Nazareth Baptist School. She lived in Nazareth with her three children. She met her husband, Ukrainian guitarist Leonid Alexeyenko, while studying music together at the Higher Music Conservatory in Moscow and they married in 2001, and got divorced in 2010.Rogue state
Rogue state or outlaw state is a term applied by some international theorists to states they consider threatening to the world's peace. This means being seen to meet certain criteria, such as being ruled by authoritarian or totalitarian governments that severely restrict human rights, sponsoring terrorism and seeking to proliferate weapons of mass destruction. The term is used most by the United States (though the US State Department officially stopped using the term in 2000), and in his speech at the United Nations (UN) in 2017, Donald Trump reiterated this phrase. However, it has been applied by other countries as well.
Portals: Terrorism · War